Column by CCTC President Kevin Pollock: Central Carolina seeing growth, promising future

By Dr. Kevin Pollock

I hope this finds you in good health and high spirits. I write to express my gratitude and share some exciting developments from Central Carolina Technical College that I believe are of great interest to our community. It is a pleasure to use The Sumter Item platform to keep our community members informed and engaged.

First and foremost, I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to our students, faculty, staff and the community at large for their unwavering support of the college. Adjusting post-pandemic to challenges we never saw coming has not been an easy task. Students have impressed us with their will and determination to continue their education in whatever modality works best for their situation. Faculty and staff have been asked to pivot multiple times while taking on additional duties to ensure we remain the best college in the area.

I am delighted to report that CCTC has made significant strides recently in terms of physical plant growth and improvements. In the coming months, you will see early signs of construction on a new three-story, 50,000+- square-foot building on the main campus. This will serve as the Academic and Student Services Building, not only bringing more students to the campus, but also offering a multitude of student support services in one location. With this new building will come the demolition of older buildings that no longer serve the needs of students, faculty or staff. New funding from the state has allowed the college to address maintenance issues in almost every building including HVAC, roof repair and parking lot improvements. We have also started the master planning process to tackle expansion of buildings and new academic programming with an environmental scan of the communities we serve.

Local industries have long asked for an improved and enhanced pipeline of students into key areas. For CCTC, those typically come from health sciences and industrial technology. We’re proud to say we are bringing back the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) certificate in fall 2024. The State Board of Nursing site visit team commented that “CCTC has one of the nicest simulation and skills labs among South Carolina’s educational institutions.” You will notice a new teaching associate degree and expanded health information credentials for the fall 2024 academic year as well. More than 1,400 students benefited from our workforce development and continuing education programs this past year. CCTC also invited more than 200 companies to serve on our various advisory committees, offering advice and information to keep up with best business practices.

This past academic year, CCTC taught 4,370 students, fed 175 students and their families through our food pantry, certified more than 100 residents in the Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) program at no cost to them, awarded 85 CCTC Foundation scholarships and achieved a 92% job placement rate for graduates.

We are grateful to the many community partners that help us make this happen including local schools and industries, generous donors, board and commission members and supportive elected officials.

We are actively working on improving access to education, especially for underserved communities. Through federal grants and national organizations like Achieving the Dream, we aim to provide resources and support to help more students pursue higher education.

In closing, I want to emphasize that CCTC remains committed to our mission of improving lives through excellence in teaching, learning and economic enhancement through workforce development. I encourage community members to stay connected with us, participate in our upcoming events and continue to provide feedback and suggestions as we strive for excellence in all that we do.

Thank you once again for your continued support. We look forward to a promising future filled with new opportunities for growth and learning at Central Carolina Technical College.

Kevin Pollock is president of Central Carolina Technical College. Click here to view the original article.